RIO DE JANEIRO, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 16th August, 2016) - Algeria's defending champion Taoufik Makhloufi on Tuesday advanced smoothly to the semi-finals of the men's 1500m having had just two hours' sleep after bagging silver in the 800m. Makhloufi, who came in second in the 800m behind David Rudisha late Monday, timed 3min 47.07sec to win his heat. "I had some massage after the 800m," he said. "I was in my bed at 4 o'clock in the morning and I slept only two hours! "This part between the 800m and the heats of the 1500m was always going to be the most difficult part in qualifying for the semi-finals of the latter.
" Makhloufi admitted that he hadn't been certain that a double was on the cards. "I wasn't sure about doubling up. I did some training in Algeria and then we took the decision, me and my coach, here in Rio," he confirmed. "In my head I said I wanted to run the 800m. "I was very pleased with the race, I am so happy with the silver medal in the 800m behind Rudisha. I wanted to win, but I didn't get much chance in the last 250 metres." Kenyan Asbel Kiprop, 2008 Olympic gold medallist and three-time defending world champion, easily won his heat in 3:38.97. Also qualifying for Thursday's semi-finals, with the final scheduled for Saturday, are Kiprop's teammate Ronald Kwemoi as well as Morocco's world bronze medallist Abdalaati Iguider, Djibouti's Ayanleh Souleiman and American duo Ben Blankenship and Matther Centrowitz.